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Discussion Starter #1
Due to poor manufacturing tolerances, the drawbar on my hitch is not a very snug fit. Because of this I sometimes get some pretty loud "clunks" when starting, stopping, or turning. On the folding trailer with electric brakes, it's not too bad as there is always tension on the drawbar with the brakes applied. I will just occasionally get a "clunk" on a sharp turn. The boat trailer is a different matter. With surge brakes, when stopping the trailer pushes against the drawbar to activate the master cylinder, pushing the drawbar up, "Clunk". When starting again, the drawbar is pulled back down, "Clunk". The noise, while doing no harm, is annoying. I have tried a few different things, but have yet to come up with a satisfactory solution. Is anyone else have this problem? Is so, have you found a solution?
In the past, my trailer hitches have been Class II and the drawbar fit snugly or they have been custom hitches with fixed drawbars. Is this problem unique to Honda or common to Class III hitches?
 

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Every Class 3 or 4 hitch I've ever had has "clunked" to some extent; I just towed my boat with my RL for the first time, and this one's no exception. The noise is worse with a trailer that has little tongue weight.

It's likely that the "Honda" hitch is actually manufactured by Reese or Draw-Tite under an OEM contract. Thus, it uses exactly the same tubing stock used in other Class 3 hitches. They're just not made to have a very precise fit between receiver and drawbar.

If the clunking is a real bother to you, you might try this Valley locking pin. I haven't used one, but it should eliminate a lot of the noise.

Bob
 

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Discussion Starter #4
What did you use for a shim? Haven't hit on something that worked yet.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks mcneon. That might help even though the majority of the clunking is the drawbar rotating up and down on the pin rather than side to side. Since I frequently remove my drawbar if I am not using it, I would rather find a fix that didn't involve having to unbolt it.
 

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I've experienced the clunk on other brands of hitches as well.
Usually I put my draw bar in the trunk wrapped with a towel when not in use.
 
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mcneon said:
The noise is worse with a trailer that has little tongue weight.
I had the clunking noise while pulling my 6x12 trailer with Drew's kart in tow. It stopped as soon as we installed a generator on the tongue of the trailer.
Thanks Bob. Good to know. :p
 

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There are tow bar pins available that have in addition to the fitted lock a bolt type tightner at their end that allows you to tighten them to the point they hold the tow hitch and bar together snug. They have some kind of slightly irregular shape that snugs the tow bar and hitch as you tighten the bolt.
 

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I put up with the noise when towing my popup camper with my Pilot for a couple years.
Sounded like someone was hamerin on the frame.
Got real old after a couple hours on the road.
I finally ran two small beads with my MIG.
1 on bottom in front of pin and 1 on top behind pin.
I then used angle grinder to smooth it to a snug fit.
BEAUTIFUL & quiet.
I had tried wrapping with duct tape first, it helped for a while, but made a real sticky mess!
The day after I brought the Ridgeline home I checked it.
It was worse than the Pilot so did 4 beads on it
1 top, 1 bottom & 1 on each side.
I have gotten the camper out yet, but should be good !
 

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Every 2" receiver on every truck I've ever owned did this to some degree. Fixes have included "anti-rattle" clips and cedar shim shingles, depending on what was open that day and how much money I wanted to part with.

Shim shangles are pretty cheap, but shabby-looking on a $30K truck...
 
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